Single taste bud suicide (The horrid pain!)


Searched the archives and the boards, and have found nothing on this…

It all starts well-enough… you’re out, doing that thing you do, when suddenly you notice… well not ‘notice’… maybe sense? Yes. Better. You sense a small bump on your tongue. It’s slightly painful, and you rub it over your teeth and sure enough you feel something.

You get yourself to the nearest mirror and check out your tongue, and notice that one single bud has decided to go supernova on you. It’s all out there and white as if you just got a pimple. Oh, and it hurts! You know, that small, but constant, hurt that just annoys you all day… makes you grit your teeth unknowingly, thereby causing you a massive headache that you would never have had, were it not for this little bud’s blaze of glory? Yeah. That pain.

So a day goes by and the final explosion occurs, and now you have this little scorch-mark-like-thing on your tongue, as if your body sent a small demolition crew to the site and they took it out with some TNT, and it still hurts.

My question (Finally): Why? Why does one taste bud decide to take that bridge and end its little taste-budding life, and why does (s)he have to cause me pain while doing so?

I don’t have an answer to your question, but I can tell you confidently that this happens to me all the time, and those little buggers hurt like HELL.

This happens very occasionally to me as well, maybe a couple of times per year. My solution is to bite the afflicted taste bud and basically crush it with my front teeth. This is painful briefly, but I find that it hurts less afterward. I would rather have a few seconds of sharp pain than a few days of a dull pain.

I get those, and I usually pinch the offending taste bud off. Although pinching it off with my nails is very painful briefly - once it is gone, so is the pain.

Uh can’t a white bump like that on your tongue be the sign of a cancerous or pre-cancerous growth? :frowning:

I get one of these every couple months. A few questions: How many taste buds do we start out with, before they start self-destrucing? What causes them to do this (irritation, spicy food, etc.)? Does a new taste bud grow in its place, or do we simply wind up with fewer and fewer of them? And is this the reason why so many elderly people have a lost or diminished sense of taste?

That’s possible. It’s called leukoplakia.

I get something very similar, except that they’re not really visible. No white bumps, just a really sore tiny bump. And here I thought I was the only one!

I never could manage to bite the little suckers off, so I finally grabbed a pair of tweezers and yanked the last few off. Hurts, yes, but it heals almost immediately, instead of hanging around, swollen and mean, for days on end. I seem to get them when I’m really eating too much sugar.

I’m no expert, but I assume that the swelling is because of infection.

When I get these… thingies (can someone give a proper name for them?), I gargle with hydrogen peroxide. It’s painless and gets rid of the swelling almost immediately.

Another vote for hydrogen peroxide. I dab a little on the inflamed bump before I go to bed, and it’s typically gone by morning.

I’ve tried removing the bumps with tweezers, but that hurts too much and seems to make them worse.

I also get them, and I usually sever 'em with small scissors.

I get these whenever I eat peanuts. Maybe it is a slight allergic reaction.

My great-grandmother used to call them “lie bumps.” Supposedly you got them from telling lies…

I sever 'em with nail clippers (sterilized in alcohol would be best). The pain is almost gratifying bycause it overrides the pain from the offending bud and seems like a more normal kind of pain. Somehow this seems preferable and it lasts only a second. Plus once the bud is gone, there’s no more pain and no more bother. It’s miraculous, given that you’ve actually just inflicted a small wound upon yourself.

I wonder, would the bud heal if not severed, and by removing them are we unnecessarily degrading our sense of taste by a tiny bit at a time?

Well, we have two issues here. What our OP seems to be getting is a canker sore (not cold sore, not cancer, not cancre). It is a minor infection, often set off by an imbalance in your body- like a cold or flu. They are a small ulcer. Eating high acid foods or using toothpaste with Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) often is the cause- biting your cheek may also set them off. This next is a commercial site, note. They only have one thing wrong- there are several brands that don’t have SLS- including Biotene, which I like to use.

They can sometimes be cured by Acidolpholus and Vitamin C.

Here is a non-commerical site:

Here is Biotene’s site:

In Mike’s case- they may be cold or herpes sores- as peanuts contain an Amino acid which can set off dormant cases of herpes. L-lysine will help. I’d guess that some Acidolpholus and Vitamin C wouldn’t hurt either. Check out site #2.

I probably don’t have to off but one every couple of years so it’s not a big deal for me there.

I find I get these if I’ve gotten something stuck behind my retainer and pick and it with the tip of my tongue for extended periods before it comes out. The next day, a tastebud will inflame.

I bet you get them from digging the peanut bits out of your teeth.

I had one of those bumps about six or seven months ago. It hurt a little, but the fact that it had changed the texture of my normally smooth tongue was more annoying than anything else.

My solution? Staring at it in the mirror.